Smile! You’re on FxCamera!

First impressions

In the age of social media, photographs are one of the most popular attachments posted on Facebook et al. How many times have we shuddered when we’ve seen the dreaded words “You’ve been tagged”, meaning that some dear friend (or enemy) has seen fit to post a photograph of us looking absolutely ghastly at a party, dinner, on vacation, or in a compromising position?

There are thousands of photos out there of our pets, our family, our friends, things we find interesting and places we’ve visited. As a result, any app that can manipulate our pictures, make them look a bit different and generally more fascinating, is one to consider in our book. FxCamera is a freebie, and best of all, it works with our behind-the-times iPhone 3GS.

We downloaded it and began to work our way through the different effects and options it offers. Hey! It’s a neat little app!

How it works

Once you download it from the App Store you are presented with a simple screen sporting what appears to be a faux wood background. The latest version has a Happy Holidays limited effects option as its first choice, and after that comes Joycam, Instant, Symmetric, Fisheye and Normal PLUS. Each of these titles covers a range of effects you can use. Por ejemplo, Joycam has 16 effects including Olga (no idea, don’t ask), X Blue, Retro, Tungsten, Magenta and Dreamy. Gee, maybe the last one can conjure up a picture of a gorgeous man who might, say, appear on Grey’s Anatomy.

The Instant option has nine effects, including Vintage and Rainy. The effects basically change the colours in elements of your photograph giving it different looks. The Aged effect made an example photo like it had been left out in the sun for a few days.

Symmetric is one of the most interesting options. It chooses an axis and reflects the image along it. Some results are really cool, while others are downright strange. It’s a really fun one to mess around with.

Fisheye, of course, speaks for itself, and then Normal PLUS can offer Soft Focus, Sepia and Negative effects, to name a few.

Beyond all the effects this app includes, you can also take a photo and add a voice caption at the same time, and add effects to photographs you’ve already got in your album.

Once you’ve manipulated a photograph using all the different effects at your disposal and saved it to your photo album, the app takes you straight to a screen where you can write a caption and instantly share your handiwork on Facebook or Twitter.

When we tried it

We have always liked this kind of app that enables us to take perfectly nice pictures of people and things, and then make them look wonky or turn them strange colours. We downloaded it and then began looking for victims in the office and elsewhere. As friends scattered far and wide to avoid our lens, we decided to train it on inanimate objects instead. The dining table in the house looked pretty interesting once we threw it into the Symmetric hopper, and the white coffee cup on our desk went from blue to red to magenta as we made our way through Joycam.

We found an old photo of our best friend Lynne on our phone, and promptly turned her face green which was pretty awesome. One of our favourites, however, became the Fisheye option. Somehow being able to convert two-dimensional countenances into something one might see in a glass ball never got old.

Again, we were very happy that we were able to use this app with our grandfather iPhone 3GS model, as a lot of apps that focus (mirth) on the camera seem to require the fancier iPhone 4 or 5. We’re sure that those young bucks will take get better photographs, and may have more options available due to their upgraded hardware, but we were pretty content with what we got.

Final thoughts

This is a free app so you really have nothing to lose. It’s a fun little thing to try out, and if you don’t like it, you can just delete it and move on. Odds are good you’ll probably keep it around, though, if for no other reason than to get back at those who tag you in Facebook from now on.

FxCamera

Cost: Free

Seller: Bitcellar, Inc.

Devices: iOS and Android

Rating: E for Everyone

Three stars

We have always liked this kind of app that enables us to take perfectly nice pictures of people and things, and then make them look wonky or turn them strange colours.

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